Funding to accelerate growth, build out global storage network, allow enterprises to plug into new model for on-demand primary storage
BOSTON, November 2, 2015 – ClearSky Data, provider of a global storage network that manages the entire enterprise data lifecycle, today announced it has raised $27 million in a Series B investment round led by Polaris Partners, with a strategic investment from Akamai Technologies. Previous investors General Catalyst and Highland Capital Partners also participated in the funding, which ClearSky will use to grow its sales, marketing and operations organizations, and add new points of presence (PoPs) in major metro areas. The round brings total investment in the company to $39 million.
The investment in ClearSky comes as the company breaks new ground with its managed service delivery model for enterprise storage, which combines the performance and availability of primary storage with the economics and scalability of the cloud. Polaris Partners recognizes this on-demand model represents the future of enterprise infrastructure and has a track record in building large, successful companies that transform industries. Akamai’s strategic investment in ClearSky reflects its belief in the company’s innovative approach to primary storage, which will help enterprise IT become more agile and take advantage of hybrid cloud adoption.
“Managing primary storage is a huge and poorly served challenge in the enterprise infrastructure market. Legacy systems have failed to address customer needs and no one has figured out how to leverage the economics and agility of the cloud – until now. ClearSky has addressed this challenge head-on, creating a breakthrough software-as-a-service (SaaS) offering for primary storage,” said Dave Barrett, managing partner of Polaris Partners. “We’ve entered the next generation of the enterprise and ClearSky has a great opportunity to build the next major infrastructure company.”
The storage market is being transformed by the growth of cloud computing and the availability of new on-demand services. ClearSky leverages these elements to solve the challenges of traditional storage systems, which are costly, complex remnants of legacy infrastructure unable to support today’s huge and growing data footprints. Because status quo data storage infrastructure limits business flexibility, storage has become not only an IT priority, but also a boardroom priority. ClearSky’s fully managed service automatically caches data across a network of geographically distributed layers, making data available to enterprise users where and when it’s needed.
Andy Champagne, vice president and chief technology officer, Akamai Labs at Akamai Technologies said, “ClearSky’s global storage network is the way for enterprises to move their data to the cloud—with the security, performance and availability they need to succeed. At Akamai, we know firsthand how to build a global network that meets the stringent requirements of enterprise customers, and we look forward to working with the ClearSky team to help customers worldwide as they adopt this new approach to enterprise storage.”
Dave Barrett will join the ClearSky board of directors and Andy Champagne will join as a board observer. ClearSky board members also include Sean Dalton, general partner at Highland Capital Partners; David Orfao, partner at General Catalyst Partners; and market leaders Paula Long and Jit Saxena.
The ClearSky global storage network combines primary storage, backup and disaster recovery with on-demand scaling and agility. It automatically caches data – moving cold data to the cloud, keeping warm data in metro-based PoPs within 120 miles of customers, and storing a small portion of hot data on-premises. Customers retain the performance and availability of a local storage array with the comprehensive security, low latency and high availability required for enterprise applications.
“Polaris Partners and Akamai Technologies deeply understand what it means to create a breakthrough model for enterprise infrastructure,” said Ellen Rubin, CEO and co-founder of ClearSky Data. “We value their expertise as we focus on fast growth and market expansion during this next phase of our company’s development, and are excited to deliver a global service that will change enterprise storage forever.”